2010 Tesla Roadster Sport vs. 2011 Porsche Boxster Spyder

April 5th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

2010 Tesla Roadster Sport vs. 2011 Porsche Boxster Spyder

Tesla begins production of RHD roadster

February 4th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Tesla Motors has begun production of the right-hand drive version of its all-electric Roadster, to be launched in the UK later this month.

“The right-hand-drive model is our response to growing demand from high-performance car buyers in the UK who are also interested in their impact on the environment,” said Cristiano Carlutti, Tesla’s Vice President for European Sales and Operations. “Tesla is dramatically expanding its retail footprint in Europe, we look forward to building our community of owners and fans throughout the continent.”

Further to the new right-hand drive system, the Tesla Roadster has also seen a few upgrades for the 2010 model year. These include improvements to noise-reduction materials, a new stereo system and other minor enhancements.

Tesla has delivered about 1,000 Roadsters to customers in 21 countries since the car went first went on sale in 2008. The new RHD version, is available exclusively at Tesla’s Knightsbridge showroom in London but it’s likely some examples will be exported to markets like Japan and Australia and possibly even here in NZ.

Disappointingly, the move to RHD production comes rather late as the current version of the Roadster is due to cease production next year in order for the Lotus factory in which it’s built to receive an upgrade.

2008 best inventions of the year

December 20th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Run, ride, swim and sing through some of Time Magazine’s best inventions of 2008


Tesla Roadster

December 17th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Lotus-derived electric supercar

Mini Coupe and Roadster on sale 2011

December 11th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

After the recent unveiling of the Mini Roadster and Mini Coupe at the Frankfurt Motor Show, new reports are now suggesting both models could be in production as early as October next year and on sale early in 2011.

Around 1000 new jobs are expected to be created at MINI’s Cowley assembly plant in the UK to help build the new Minis, according to a recent report.

Mini confirmed in September that the production Coupe will make use of the same turbo-charged 1.6 litre petrol engine that drives the MINI John Cooper Works, developing 155kW and 260Nm of torque.

The Roadster is more likely to be fitted with the 126kW 1.6 litre turbocharged engine found in the Cooper S instead of the John Cooper Works-sourced unit.

Like the Coupe, the Mini Roadster Concept has a shorter bootlid and a far more reclined windscreen than the standard Mini’s body.

Unique to the Roadster is its manually-folding fabric roof, which matches the profile of the Coupe’s roofline and gives the Roadster a very low 1356mm overall height.

Mini announced back in September that it would postpone production of its other new model, expected to be named the Mini Countryman, to make room for the Roadster and Coupe.

Mini Coupe and Roadster on sale 2011

December 11th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

After the recent unveiling of the Mini Roadster and Mini Coupe at the Frankfurt Motor Show, new reports are now suggesting both models could be in production as early as October next year and on sale early in 2011.

Around 1000 new jobs are expected to be created at MINI’s Cowley assembly plant in the UK to help build the new Minis, according to a recent report.

Mini confirmed in September that the production Coupe will make use of the same turbo-charged 1.6 litre petrol engine that drives the MINI John Cooper Works, developing 155kW and 260Nm of torque.

The Roadster is more likely to be fitted with the 126kW 1.6 litre turbocharged engine found in the Cooper S instead of the John Cooper Works-sourced unit.

Like the Coupe, the Mini Roadster Concept has a shorter bootlid and a far more reclined windscreen than the standard Mini’s body.

Unique to the Roadster is its manually-folding fabric roof, which matches the profile of the Coupe’s roofline and gives the Roadster a very low 1356mm overall height.

Mini announced back in September that it would postpone production of its other new model, expected to be named the Mini Countryman, to make room for the Roadster and Coupe.

Entry-level Porsche rumours continue

October 30th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Porsche 356 roadster fq

New details have come to light about Porsche’s long rumored entry-level model.

Recent reports state that the mid-engine sports car, tentatively dubbed the “new 356″, will cost approximately $54,022 USD. This makes it likely that the entry-level 2.9-litre Boxster will be eliminated when it is redesigned

Power will be provided by a turbocharge four-cylinder engine with 250bhp. While details are limited, the engine is expected to be engineered in a similar vein to Porsche’s current flat six but with a displacement of 1.9- or 2.0-litres.

The baby Porsche will ride on a new steel and aluminum platform, which will also be used for Audi’s upcoming R4, the Porsche should be lightweight and highly responsive. While the cars will share a common structure and several major components (the transmission, electrical system, and most likely some suspension pieces), they will both have unique styling and performance personalities.

The Audi R4 will be launched in June 2011 and the ‘new 356′ will arrive in late 2012.

BMW to develop 0 Series on Mini platform

October 9th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Mini John Cooper Works fq

The 3 Series was once the smallest car in BMW’s range, but it’s put on some serious weight over the past few generations. So to meet demand for smaller vehicles, BMW has put a lot of work into creating smaller models to slot in below it. Reports now indicate that BMW is preparing a new 0 Series to bridge the gap between the 1 Series and the Mini.

According to recent reports, BMW will base the new 0 Series on the next Mini’s platform, which means it will break with company convention and go front-wheel-drive.

The new 0 Series is expected to arrive in three- and five-door hatchback body styles, and possibly be the base for a compact roadster as well. One reason for the 0 Series is to help the company bring down its environmental impact overall, while also offering premium buyers a smaller, more efficient package.

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